Last week I reread Bridge to Terabithia so that it would be fresh in mind when I went to see the new movie. Sometimes it’s dangerous to read a book just before seeing the movie version. It’s easier when there’s some distance between the two experiences, so that they can each be enjoyed as a different, separate, telling of the story. After seeing the movie, I came away feeling a little sad–not just because of the sadness in the story, but because I felt a little disappointed in both the book and the movie. Now, in all honesty, I liked them both! But the book left me wanting a little more, and the movie filled in a little too much. So there you are. I can’t be satisfied.
It took me awhile to realize what was missing for me. The missing piece is the book discussion that I would have with my kids at school. We’d read the book together, and have a great discussion. Then we would see the movie, and have another great discussion. The most insightful and heartfelt book talks happen in a 6th grade classroom when the kids are really sparked by the story, whether it be in book form or movie form. I think my kids would like the book and have lots to say about it, and I think they’d like the modernized movie version. I miss those discussions.